Wednesday, October 30, 2013

10 Truly Creepy Songs for Your Halloween Soundtrack

Are you looking for some genuinely spooky tunes to spice up your Halloween? A few ditties to raise goosebumps on your friends' arms? Unexpected chills are the goal of this list. Yes, Michael Jackson's "Thriller" is an amazing song that everyone should queue up for their Halloween party, and "Monster Mash" is a classic. They're probably on your Halloween playlists already, which is why I'm not going to bother including them here.

1. "Earwig Town" by Chairlift

Mix dark chords with haunting tones, then throw in bugs-in-your-ears imagery for a serious case of the heebie-jeebies.

2. "Lullaby" by The Cure

Quite possibly the worst "lullaby" ever. Thanks for the nightmares about Spiderman, Robert Smith!

3. "Shankill Butchers" by The Decemberists

Before they turned infanticide into jaunty earworm "The Rake's Song," The Decemberists issued a stern, Grimm-style warning on the importance of listening to your mother at bedtime.

4. "Nightcall" by Kavinsky

Kavinsky is the zombified stage persona of French electro-pop artist Vincent Belorgey. The story goes that in "Nightcall," he has returned from the dead to visit his girlfriend and explain that a few things have ... changed. That glowing red eye is definitely a bad sign.

5. "White Chalk" by PJ Harvey

Harvey's entire album White Chalk is chock full of Gothic foreboding. The costume she inhabits on the cover and in concert adds to the unsettling feeling that her songs' mentally fragile protagonist is just one betrayal away from madness.

6. "Vampire" by John & Jehn

Either your friend has really hooked up with a bloodsucking vampire, or you're a paranoid schizophrenic who's about to burn their house down for no reason. It's a bad situation either way.

7. "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult

Okay, so this one may be on your Halloween lists already. It's still spooky (especially if you've seen The Stand). You can tell me not to fear Death all you want, but when he comes calling for you...

8. "Black Mirror" by Arcade Fire

The chaos of the ocean, the chaos of television ... is that what this song is about? Maybe, but when I hear "Black Mirror," I imagine the nightmare carnival from Something Wicked This Way Comes.

9. "Possum Kingdom" by The Toadies 

If someone invites you for a walk around the lake at Possum Kingdom State Park in Texas, just turn and run.

10. "Street Spirit (Fade Out)" by Radiohead

Want to know what it feels like to stare down the devil? Turn up the final track on The Bends, close your eyes, sit back and let it wash over you. This song is so creepy that it creeps Thom Yorke out. And he wrote it ... or did he? "It is the dark tunnel without the light at the end ... It drains me, and it shakes me, and hurts like hell every time I play it ... I wish that song hadn't picked us as its catalysts, and so I don't claim it. It asks too much... I didn't write that song." Read the rest of his thoughts on it here.

I'm going to go hug my dog, now. He'd bark if there really were a monster in the closet, right? Right?

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